Sunday, 26 January 2014

A Week in January

I have had such good intentions of posting to my blog several days this week but have opted for getting into bed early, watching a favourite TV show (American Pickers, love that show and it inspires me to start hitting up garage sales again!) or fine tuning the household organization that seems to be the theme of this month for me.

It was a good week, a great pace.  Some slow, quiet moments and some fun highlights.

Here's a snapshot of what we've been up to:


Syd is just loving school as much as ever these days.  She has taken it upon herself to ensure that all of the children in the classroom have gone to the bathroom when it's time for a bathroom break and holds the daily clipboard with everyone's name on it and calls each of the children one by one to go to the washroom.  It's so funny, the teachers tell me she even cracks the whip and makes the children who are waiting for their turn sit "criss-cross apple sauce" on the carpet.  Too funny!

I joined her class for Shabbat on Friday.  The kids made their own kiddush cups as a project earlier in the day and used them for Shabbat as well as kippahs which they made from coffee filters that they decorated.

It was so cute watching how excited they were to use items that they had made for their very special time together.


Sydney is so into both games and puzzles at the moment.  She asks me at least a half dozen times a day to play a game with her and she and Daddy do puzzles together every single day.  Right now her favourites are Candyland, Dancing Dress Up Game, Tea Party Game and Go Fish.  It has become a precious bed time routine for us to play a few rounds of one of these games before books and bed.

Happy Birthday Liz

My precious friend Liz had a birthday two days after Christmas.  Our group of Moms got together on Friday night and had a games night at our friend Sally's house to celebrate together.

Liz is such a fun loving and sweet person, you literally want to hug her every time you see her.  She has such a beautiful energy about her and I love spending time with her and her sweet family!

Sally made the most beautiful cupcakes for Liz and we all chipped in to send her to Harrison Hot Springs for a night on her own so she can have a well-deserved day to sleep in after a few months of sleepless nights with a newborn!

What a lovely time we had together playing games (Creationary, like Pictionary but with Lego, SO fun!) and visiting.

Sally sent us each home with a little box of cupcakes to share with our family.  Loved it!

Kiwi Crate

This week we got a long awaited green box in the mail, our very first Kiwi Crate.  This very cool company is a monthly art club that sends kids a box stuffed with fun art supplies each month that includes two projects to work on together.  Sydney loves art so much that I knew the minute I heard of them that it would be a hit!

Syd was super excited to get a parcel addressed to her and we completed one of the projects, Weebly Wobblers, which was an experiment of sorts with eggs stuffed with different materials that we decorated and then explored how they moved and wobbled on hard surfaces.  It was very fun!

Click here to check out Kiwi Crate or to sign up for their monthly delivery!

Happy Birthday Nadav!

This morning Sydney joined most of her preschool class at her friend Nadav's 4th Birthday party.  The kids had a fun time playing in the gym at the Kerrisdale Community Centre and then hit up the party room for treats and pizza and a pinata.

I love when Syd gets to see her school friends on the weekends, it's so awesome to see how comfortable they all are together and what deep friendships have been formed between them.

Book Club

We had our first book club of the year at the Lyceum on Saturday.  This term's theme is Friendship so after reading several books on friendship the kids made friendship bracelets with beads that they strung on to wire.

They made one bracelet for themselves and one for a friend.  Sydney decided that she wanted to give her bracelet to her friend Julia, it was very sweet!

We had Julia and her Mom over to play this week, Syd was so excited to have a playdate with her!  Jenny brought me a delicious box of macaroons from Faubourg as a little treat, loved it!

Sydney said the sweetest thing to me today, she was lying on the floor outside of my closet while I was getting dressed inside and out of nowhere she said, "Mom, you're a really great parent."  I was so touched, what a lovely thing to hear from anyone but hearing it from your own child makes it all the more precious!

Loving my girl these days, she is growing into an independent, fun and happy person and I love this time that we have together!

Monday, 20 January 2014

Riding Lesson

Today was a very exciting day for Sydney.  It was her first ever horseback riding lesson.  Syd has expressed some interest in riding a horse for a while now and I heard from a friend that at her age she could take lessons at a great farm in Southlands so I took her today to see how she'd take to it!

We met our instructor Sonia, who was very sweet, along with the horse that Syd would be riding, a small white horse named Magic.

Syd got all set with her very awesome crushed velvet riding helmet.

We started the lesson out by brushing Magic's coat. 

Then Sonia put the saddle on and she and Sydney walked the horse to the arena.

Syd got up on the saddle with no hesitation with a huge smile on her face!  She loved it!

They did a couple of rounds around the arena and then suddenly Magic kneeled down on her front legs and shook Sydney right off! 

I let out a yelp as I watched Syd tumble off the back of the horse as Sonia adeptly got Magic under control.

Syd picked herself up, brushed herself off and asked to get back on the horse, as if falling off was just part of the process.  What an amazing life lesson!  If only we all had the same attitude about things when we fall down the first time!

Thankfully Sydney was not hurt at all considering that it could have been much worse.  Mom is still recovering, watching the whole thing from afar gave me a heartattack!

Magic got the rest of the day off after that and we saddled up another pony, Becca, who was much more agreeable and Sydney rode her around the arena and then went for a walk along the road with her with Sonia and I in tow.

She loved it so much and was super keen to go again next week, my little equestrian!

Sunday, 19 January 2014

All in a Week

When the new year hit I made a conscious decision to slow my life down.  After a fall of running with my hair on fire and feeling exhausted at the end of it all, I decided that we were going to start this year off on a slower foot.

It hasn't been without it's challenges.  I am used to filling up every minute of my time with something, am forever planning things for the weeks and months ahead and really don't enjoy being idle at all.  But I find that in those idle moments, especially with Sydney, is when magic often happens.  Small, precious memories unfold that I have the feeling will be the ones that stick with me for the rest of my life.

This week I had an afternoon that was one of those times.  We had absolutely nothing planned after school so we simply came home and I asked Syd what she wanted to do.  We played about five rounds of Candyland and then decided we couldn't stay in the house a minute longer while the sun was shining so we packed a bag of outdoor toys and headed up to Dunbar park for the afternoon.

Syd played for a while and then decided that she wanted to have a snack so we climbed to the top of the bleachers by the baseball field and had a little something to eat while keeping a bird's eye view of the kids playing down below.

We chatted and laughed and shared some stories.  I loved it.  Every minute.  I've missed moments like this over the past few months as I've been busily shuttling Syd around from one activity or event to another.

Having less to do has also meant more time to connect with friends.  Yesterday afternoon we had Bea and Erin over for a playdate, something I had meaning to do for months.  We had a lovely visit together, Bea is such a sweet girl and I am looking forward to Sydney building a deeper friendship with her. 

Just love this shot of her holding the Cinderella Barbie that Sydney gave her on Christmas morning.

This weekend we had the pleasure of celebrating with two of Sydney's friends in birthday celebrations.

Yesterday we went to Leo's 5th birthday party which was a bowling extravaganza at the Grandview Lanes on Commercial Drive.

It was Sydney's first time to bowl, she loved it and was quite good at it right off the bat!

Leo's Mom, Marcy, made a very cool police car cake for Leo.  We so enjoyed the party and visiting with Sydney's preschool friends. 

I love this picture of Sydney and Julia waiting for the balls to return!

This morning we headed out to Crash Crawly's in Coquitlam to celebrate sweet Jack's 4th birthday.  What fun the kids had playing around in the indoor playground!

This week brought so many other great times.  Sydney and her classmates celebrated the Jewish holiday of Tu B'Shevat which is kind of like a Jewish Earth Day.  The kids refer to it as the birthday of the trees and take time to learn all about the environment and to be thankful for everything that trees give us.  Sydney made some special cards for Jen and Carmen for the occasion.

Sydney took a picture with her favourite tree for a homework assignment.  I love how she's hugging this little sapling that was just planted across the street from our house.

In celebration of this day Sydney got herself a little primula which she used as the centerpiece for our Shabbat dinner along with some freshly picked leaves from our garden.

I also had the pleasure of reconnecting with both my brother and sister this week.  Sydney and I met up with my brother for lunch and were treated to some lovely new year's gifts from him!

Sydney got a new Brave Barbie doll and a Disney princess floor puzzle which she absolutely adores and has put together at least two or three times every day since Paul gave it to her!

Paul gave me some very lovely gifts as well, some beautiful soaps, David's Tea and some Body Shop treats.

On Friday morning my sister and I met up at a funky little diner on Main Street called Slickety Jim's Chat and Chew for brunch and then popped up to Oakridge to go boot shopping.

We had such great luck finding boots!  Liane got herself an awesome pair which fit her perfectly the first time and I got this very stylish pair of dark brown boots with the best gold hardware!  I absolutely love them!

Of course, one pair of boots hardly seems like enough when there are so many terrific sales happening these days so the very next day when Syd and Paul and I were shopping in South Granville I got a great pair of black Geox boots as well.  I think I'm done boot shopping for a while...I hope....

Sydney has been hard at work creating some great artwork at home and school these days.

She was thrilled to inherit the giant box that my new boots came in and recreated a craft that she'd done in her preschool class where she rolls small bouncy balls in paint and then rolls them over a piece of paper inside of a box to create the coolest effect.

I especially love this piece that she made at school where she wrote the name of each of her classmates on a piece of green tape.

She also made a beautiful flower necklace with a practicum student, Young, in her class.

Our days have been starting and ending on a special note lately.  Sydney has requested what she calls 'special breakfasts' almost every morning where we set the kitchen table with proper glass plates and cups and make something a little out of the ordinary.

Sydney has been so into snuggling with a stuffy or doll to fall asleep lately.  The other night I went into her room to check on her and found her snuggled up with her Dora doll just like this, so precious especially with her Dora sheets on the bed that night!  A theme! 

What a wonderful week!